Ah yes, the sniper. Every man secretly wants to be one after playing 1 FPS (First Person Shooter for you less savvy types)yet we all curse Snipers when playing against a good one. Now Lets Play Find The Sniper!!!
While some argue that the evil genius Leonardo da Vinci did actually create the sniper rifle, the true evidence for this can be sketchy at best. Though they were technically called sharpshooters until 1824, snipers got their name from British soliders who, while probably drunk, ran around and tried to shoot an elusive bird known as a snipe. Since snipes were apparently as hard to find as a virgin in a brothel and just as difficult to hit, people who were capable of this task (sober or not) were considered sharpshooters of their own right and could then be called snipers. Thus began the long road of people who are awesome at shooting being called snipers. Snipers would then soon start to rise into the level of badass.
Once people started to associate the sniper status as any common military man who was good at taking long shots and (hopefully) killing people, the badasses came out to prove their limits. Cracked has covered some of the more famous. In every war since 1824 they have been used to spot enemy positions, and shoot assholes from the other side (or if they are on the other side,evilily taking pot shots to noble Americans in the head). In the Battle of Stalingrad we saw the greatest (read:popular to history types) sniper achievment, when the most successful, and most famous, sniper Vasily Zaytsev with 242 to 400 confirmed kills came to battle. Zaytsev was one of a whole corps of snipers and had over 30 students, who were credited with killing over 3,000 German soldiers. He was also said to have killed the specially-sent German sniper Erwin KÃ�ï¿½Ã¯Â¿Â½Ã�ï¿½Ã�Â¶nig, though this is most likely fictional. Zaytsev was awarded the Hero of the Soviet Union, primarily for his actions in this battle. His massive steel balls have yet to reach a Cracked list.
While the sniper is a noble part of our army, giving intel and awesome headsplosions to brag about latter to fellow army grunts, there is a dark side to the sniper. This is also the badass trait that we all think of ourselves as,but do to certain political sensitivities, I decided to place it in a different category. While the first sniper assassination can't be pinpointed because, assuming they succeeded means they probably weren't discovered and it was covered up. Some of the most popular have been JFK and Martin Luther King though technically assassinations via snipers is relitivly uncommon. This fact can be disputed because, as mentioned, you can't usually figure out exacly where a sniper was, especially in earlier times.
Sometimes they use adorable disguises to avoid detection too.
This is what we think of when we hear of snipers. In games such as Call of Duty and Battlefield games, they appear as normal soilders with less body armor and a rifle with a scope. Generally chosen by people who care about getting a semi-high death count with (if good at being a sniper) low death count. Sadly they resort to being just douchebags who hide in corners or buildings and "camp" on important spots to shoot people in the back and be called an asshole camper.
In single player games, snipers are just mild excuses for forcing players to use cover for once or to fake suspense. Computers vary on skill on two extremes, the physics professor with the eyes of an eagle and a pin point rifle or guys who simply shoot around you assuming they can stare you to death. Some famous sniper duals in video game history include
This old piece of shit will take you 2 hours to beat, yet you'll love it
This guy took the time to learn how to properly do the shot,while most of us just smiled at the irish accent and shot 40 times hoping the spiraling bullet hit him.
Anyone who whines about me forgeting your favorite dual, feel free to leave me an angry comment I'll never read.